Battle of Sokovia

By Ashley-Rae Ridsdel-Brown

Action / Romance

Chapter 5

"Seriously Pietro, I said left hand then right." I said frustrated. I'd told him about five times and he was still doing it wrong. Though I could tell by the humour in his eyes he was doing it on purpose.

"Like this?" he said grabbing my arm and twisting me into his chest. He smiled down at me and I noticed our height difference for the first time. I pushed away annoyed and pulled off my gloves.

"For god sake, is this a game to you?" I asked hearing my voice strain slightly "You wanna end up like you did in Sokovia?"

That stopped his smirking "No." he said his eyes turning steely "And that was different, you know that."

I nodded feeling like I'd maybe been a bit bitchy "Yes. But this training is important too if you wanna be with your sister."

He shrugged his shoulders like he was ready to continue and rushed me. I was expecting it and stepped to the side to avoid him. I stuck out my arm and it hit him fully in the chest. He went down with a grunt but what I hadn't expected was for him to grab me as well. I landed on top of him on the mat and threw out my hands to stop from putting my whole weight on his injured chest.

"If this was a game-" he said smiling up at me. I could feel his breath on my neck warming my skin "-I'd be having fun." I wanted to throw back a witty comment but I was too preoccupied with my position. His arms were holding me up, his fingers gripping round my waist tightly. I could feel his fast breathing against my body and realised my legs were fitted perfected either side of his own.

I rolled away quickly and hit the mat next to him catching my breath. He started to laugh under his breath and I looked over at him incredulously. But upon seeing his face I couldn't help but laugh as well. He turned his head to look at me and the breath caught in my throat.

This was a nightmare. How could I concentrate when he was staring at me like that. Though there was a sense of humour and mischievousness in that smile there was also an underlying hunger in his eyes that could be dangerous for us both. He lifted his arm from his stomach and let it fall inches away from my face. What should I do? Was this his usual personality or was this meant for me? I was so confused. I turned my head to look at the ceiling and heard him sigh.

Before I could look back he was on his feet and holding his hand out to me. I took it feeling heat radiate up my arm and he pulled me up so I was standing right in front of him. There was silence in the room as I dropped his hand.

"That's it for the day, we'll pick it up tomorrow." I said moving towards my bag

"Blake. I can do better." he said making me turn "If you want to carry on, I'll stop messing around."

That was odd, what made him change his mind? "Are you serious, because I don't want to waste my time if-"

"No you won't be." he said with a small smile "You are right, this is important."

"Huh, right then." I said looking around the room "How about pull ups, you ok to do them with your arm?" I didn't even get chance to finish before he was across the room adding chalk to his hands.

I had to admit that after a while of watching him it was probably one of the worst things for me to ask him to do, it was extremely distracting for me.

"Yep that's enough." I said after only ten or so. He dropped down looking amused.

"Are you sure?" he said with a raised eyebrow

"Yeah definitely."

The door opened behind us and Nat came in. She took in the scene and smiled mischievously.

"Hey guys." The was she said it held so much meaning I could have thrown her the dirtiest glare. "She running you ragged Maximoff?" she asked

"How can you tell?" he asked smiling and wiping sweat off his forehead. I threw him a towel and picked up my bag

"Yeah we're done here." I said walking over to Nat wanting to get as far away from Pietro as possible "You need the room?"

"Oh no." she said shaking her head "Just wanted to check up"

"Uh huh." I said linking my arm in hers "Let's go. See you later Pietro." I yelled over my shoulder

"How cute, he's like a wounded puppy." said Nat looking back as the doors swung shut to the training bay.

"Nat come on, stop. He's like that with everyone." I said trying to hide my smile

"You like him." she said shaking my arm

"Nope. We're just...we just work together." I said in what I thought was a convincing voice

"Fine, fine. I believe you." she said looking at me sideways

"You've got your 'I've got a plan' look on your face." I said cringing

"This is my usual face."

"Exactly." I said laughing "Please don't do anything Nat, I'm happy the way things are."

"Whatever you say kiddo." she said letting go of my arm "Don't forget Stark's do tonight up on level four."

"What? He literally just had one, what is this one for?"

"Oh you know Tony, any excuse to throw an outrageously expensive party, house warming I think." she said walking away "Wear something nice."

"I don't own anything nice." I shouted after her.

Damn I just wanted to hang out with Wanda tonight, now I had a party to go to. I walked down to Wanda's room and knocked on the door. She answered fairly quickly and smiled when she saw it was me.

"Apparently I'm having a fashion emergency." I said once she let me in "Nat reminded me I have nothing to wear for tonight."

"I'll find you something." she laughed. I looked round and saw everything she had in her room was new apart from the outfit I'd first met her in. Her red jacket was hung on the back of the door covered in brick dust and tarnished in smoke. I had a feeling she hadn't worn it since that day in Sokovia, the association of it with her brother's death would have been too strong.

People had made an effort to get her things though, maybe to make her feel better or just as an eventuality of her needing them. She walked over to her wardrobe and pulled out a few dresses.

"Hey I dunno about a dress." I said wrinkling my nose

"Well too bad because that's all I have in your size." she said throwing them to me. Perhaps I could get away with my usual jeans, tee, and leather jacket. But Wanda made me try all four dresses on and after a while I warmed to one of them. It was black with lace sleeves and back. The material it was made of gave off more of a casual look so I didn't feel too bad in it. She deliberated then decided it looked fine with the boots I was already wearing.

"Where's all your stuff?" I asked letting my hair down out of the band I'd put it in before practice.

"What's left of it is back in Sokovia. They said they'll send it over after the relief squad has been through the city."

"Have you been in touch with anyone over there since..." I trailed off because I didn't want to mention anything that might upset her

"No, but then me and Pietro kept to ourselves before Strucker found us. We don't really have anyone but each other." she said moving my hair into a more attractive position as I faced the mirror

"You've got us all now." I said with a smile and she grinned at me through her reflection

"I didn't think I'd ever be happy again." she sighed sitting down on her bed "Now I have my brother back, they've made me part of the team and I met you." she said nudging me on the arm. My heart warmed as I looked at her, I was glad she saw me as a friend too. Now that I was clearly going to be spending time with both her and her brother, it made it easier we all got along, even if my 'relationship' with Pietro was a bit confusing.

"So" I said taking in a deep breath "What are you going to wear?"

An hour later we were both ready and heading to the fourth floor. We heard music before we reached the room and I nearly turned round and retreated. I looked over and saw Wanda had the same expression.

"It won't be that bad." I said knowing it was her first 'Avengers' party.

"I'll take your word for it." she said pushing open the door.

The entire team plus most of the recruits were packed into the hall. The only time I'd been in here was when we were having a briefing of the new rules since moving to this base. It fit just under 100 people so I felt immediately overwhelmed with the number of bodies in the room. We spotted Clint and Steve chatting by the bar and I made a bee-line for them towing Wanda behind me for support.

"Hey kids." said Clint beaming as he saw us "You guys want a drink?" I could tell he'd already had a few but I didn't see the harm.

"I do yeah." I said turning "Wanda?"

She nodded and followed Clint to get the drinks whilst I was left with Steve.

"Agent." he said nodding towards me

"Enjoying yourself Captain?" I asked nervously trying to keep the conversation light

"I don't know about that but I'm getting used to Starks parties." he said smiling down at me. I'd forgotten just how big he was.

"Where is the guest of honour?" I asked looking around for Tony

"Oh, he's not actually here." Laughed Steve gesturing round the room "He just wanted to have a party."

"Figures." I said taking my drink from Wanda as she returned. "You wanna find somewhere to sit?" I asked her and she looked extremely grateful.

We found a couch off the side of the room and commandeered it from a few male recruits with some kind words and minor flirting. They were already in awe of Wanda who was the tall foreign beauty as well as an Avenger.

"That was easy." she said taking a seat next to me

"Course it was, you're like a celebrity around here."

"Is that a good thing or a bad thing?" she asked amused

"Well in this case it's a good thing." I said taking a drink. I looked up as someone flopped down next to her and gripped my glass tighter. It was Pietro.

"Having fun?" he asked surveying the room and then looking back at me. His eyes slid down my body to my exposed legs and I shifted so they weren't as on show. He smiled awkwardly when he realised what I was doing and looked away.

"I was." I muttered under my breath

"It is a bit crowded." said Wanda pulling her shawl tighter around her shoulders.

"Mmhm." agreed Pietro half listening. I followed his gaze and saw my friend Emily dancing with her roommate. She looked stunning as usual, tall and blond, nothing I could match with. My stomach twisted into a knot and I drank the rest of my drink very fast before standing up.

"You good now?" I asked Wanda setting down my glass "I think I'm gonna go."

"Oh already? Alright, do you want me to come-"

"No no, you enjoy yourself, I'll see you later." I said getting to my feet and walking away. I looked back over my shoulder at the twins. Wanda was giving me a far off look and I hoped she wasn't trying to read my mind. Pietro was stretched out next to her both his arms laid out on the back of the couch. He didn't seem to have noticed me leave but he had turned his attention from Emily to his sister. I opened the door trying to ignore the disappointment welling inside of me, a feeling I didn't want and couldn't control.

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